France's 4,716 km (2,930 mi) of coastline, dotted with numerous small harbors, has long supported a flourishing coastal and highseas fishing industry. The total catch for 2000 was 596,296 tons. French aquaculture consists mainly of oyster and mussel production; most of the facilities are located along the English Channel and the Atlantic coasts.
Herring, skate, whiting, sole, mackerel, tuna, sardines, lobsters, and mussels make up the principal seafood catch, along with cod, mostly from the fishing banks off northern North America, where French fishing vessels have sailed for centuries. Exports of canned seafood products in 2000 totaled $228.3 million, mostly tuna, mackerel, and sardines.
Total imports of seafood products in 2000 were valued at $2.9 billion, while exports were valued at $1.1 billion. The United Kingdom and Norway are France's leading seafood suppliers.